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HOW SOME VALLEY MEN HAVE BECOME MR. MOM By PATTI MURPHY For the Express

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teve Deffe calls himself one of the original stay-athome dads. Two decades ago, when his ďŹ rst child was born, Deffe and his wife decided to take on nontraditional parenting roles in which she would be the primary breadwinner and he would take care of all things domestic. “My wife is a CPA and she started her own business,â€? said the 56-year-old Ketchum resident. “She loves kids, but she also loves work. I love kids, too, and it’s not that I don’t like work, but I suggested that when we had children, she could work and I would raise them.â€? Deffe and his wife have two children: Madison, the ďŹ rst, is now 20, while Drew, 17, is still in high school. While Deffe’s wife is happily bringing home the bacon, Deffe is in charge of cooking it—and doing yard work, grocery shopping, home repairs and much of the child rearing. For the two of them, this arrangement works beautifully. “I never really gave it any thought,â€? he said, referring to whether he stuck out as an oddity among the usual gathering of mommies at school, in the grocery store or at the doctor’s ofďŹ ce. “It wasn’t like the movie ‘Mr. Mom,’ where all the ladies came over and played cards,â€? he said with a laugh. “I’ll tell you what was really interesting,â€? he added. “I was also building our house at the same time, from the ground up. I remember so many times standing looking out the window at the bike path with a kid in my arms feeding her a bottle and thinking, ‘I’ll never get to do that again.’ But it all worked out.â€?

Steve Deffe clowns around with his children, Drew, at left, and Madison, 17 and 20 respectively. When Madison was born, Deffe and his wife agreed that she would continue her work as a CPA while he raised their children and built their home “from the ground up.� Express photos by David N. Seelig

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In decades past, men were looked at as more of a “paycheck� rather than nurturing and caring parents. Today, out of both necessity and desire, dads like Deffe are becoming more hands-on participants in raising young children. According to the 2010 census, an estimated 154,000 stay-at-home dads in the U.S. care for 287,000 children. These married fathers remain out of the labor force so they can care for the family while their wives work outside the home. From the very beginning, Deffe was the one to get the kids up, get them dressed and fed and get them to school every day, duties that he acknowledges have been performed by single or stay-at-home moms for generations. “Every time I look at the legal section of the paper and see people getting divorced and seeing single moms juggling a couple of kids, I think, ‘I don’t know how anybody can do that—raise kids and hold down a job and keep a house by themselves.’ It’s a full-time job. Talk about super Moms!� Deffe said he doesn’t remember many instances of feeling left out because he was a dad stepping into a traditional mom role, except perhaps one. “I never got to learn to swim with my kids because it was always ‘mommy-and-me’ classes,� he said. “Now I don’t know how to swim, but the kids do.� Deffe said he met with more resistance from other men than from the moms he encountered on a daily basis.

Ketchum resident Mike David, center, has a big role in raising his three children, Tillie, 10, left, his son Gray, 15, and Darby, 13.

“There were so many men who couldn’t believe I would allow my wife to be the breadwinner or make more money than me. I would look at them and go, ‘Huh?’ Are you kidding me?’ I just don’t understand how anyone can think that.�

SINGLE DADS SHARING CUSTODY Mike David, 45, of Ketchum, juggles three jobs and cares for his three children at least three days a week, a responsibility he splits 5050 with his ex-wife, Sarah. He admits that it often is a challenge to ďŹ nd balance with so many jobs and so many variables. “I try to condense as much work into the time when the kids are at

school so we can keep the evening hours for the family,â€? he said, adding that he works well over 50 hours a week and hasn’t taken a vacation in years. He consults for the Blaine County Housing Authority, substitute teaches for the Blaine County School District and manages accounts and producer relations for the nonproďŹ t food cooperative Idaho’s Bounty. In 2009, there were 11.6 million single parents in the U.S. living with their children. Of those, 9.9 million were single mothers and 1.7 million were single fathers. At ages 15, 13 and 10, David’s children stay busy with sports and other activities after school. But there are still times when their schedules don’t align. See DADS, Page S7


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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

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SKIP THE TIE. Carey-area residents, from left, Ron Hill, Jack Barton, Elwyn Syhl, Jim Peterson and Aaron Andrews share coffee at Castle’s Corner in Carey. The men often meet in the morning to discuss topics ranging from farming to high school sports. Express photo by David N. Seelig

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By TONY EVANS Express staff writer Even in a world of instant messaging and cell phones, men continue to gather in person each morning at coffeehouses across Blaine County to drink a cup, trade scuttlebutt and otherwise amuse one another before starting the day. Membership is free at these coffee klatches, but attendance is required.

EARLY RISERS IN CAREY A dozen or so men come and go at Castle’s Corner store each morning to drink coffee, chat and otherwise check in before heading to their mostly agricultural jobs. They pay little attention to the cable news channel playing overhead, choosing instead to glance through the Farm Country Trader magazine, offer one another advice about fi xing equipment and tease one another ceaselessly. Newborn steers have been on the ground since March, but these farmers are focused on irrigating their crops. “When you’re beating ice off your sprinkler heads, you know you’re irrigating too early,” said Darrell McKinsey, a self-proclaimed “greenhorn” at farming. He has only been at it two years, since moving away from building houses in the Wood River Valley. Mont Roesbery says some of the men have been meeting long before there was a Castle’s Corner. Old-timers sit in at coffee to still be a part of things, while younger men listen in to catch on to the daily proceedings. Snowpack and water supply make up a significant part of the conversation. Carey farmers watch the snowpack in the high country every bit as closely as skiers watch the depth of snow on top of Bald Mountain near Sun Valley. A good ski year typically indicates a good year for farming in Carey. During the course of the morning, I’m introduced to at least three Mike McKinseys—and I’m not at all sure I ever met the actual one. One of them tells me that in 1977, a very low-snow year, the reservoir was drained too early and farmers planted less acreage than they would have in a good water year. “It was really hard,” he says. “It was hard on Ketchum, too. That was before [Earl] Holding owned Sun Valley, before they put in snowmaking equipment.” When the sun crests over the hill, the gathering begins to dissipate. In summer, they will be out the door

even earlier. Roesbery says goodbye to the bunch, saying, “I have to go roll my lawn.” Roesbery will spend the rest of the morning hauling a steamroller-type contraption behind an enormous tractor, smoothing out the bumps in his lawn caused by nightcrawler worms. “Now that’s something you should get a picture of for your newspaper,” says one of the Mike McKinseys. “Mont Roesbery rolling out his lawn with a 200-horsepower tractor.”

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About an hour’s drive north of Carey, a similar group of men meet every morning around the fireplace at Tully’s coffeehouse in Ketchum. The group is made up of retirees, young professionals and a former ski instructor or two—instead of farmers—but the feeling of camaraderie is the same. They read newspapers, laughing about a headline from time to time, or comment on the latest professional golf or tennis match. Everyone is happy that the sun is out. Ron Heller, a legendary University of Southern California football player and bit-part movie actor, takes an obvious delight in getting together with friends at Tully’s. “It’s an essential part of my day. A time to congregate with people of the same ilk,” Heller says. Conversation picks up in some corners and dies down in others when a group decides to focus on the newspaper. The talk is about as random as can be, but the goal is universal: to check in and stay in touch with one another. “It all depends on who shows up and what’s been happening,” says Jim Dowen, who came to the valley from a suit job in Cincinnati four decades ago, working his way up in the building trades. He sold a business recently and says he has some time on his hands. “I think we all get together to make sure we’re still above ground,” he jokes. Jack Crawford, a 30-year ski school veteran and former head pro of the tennis program at Sun Valley, checks out at about 10 a.m. to hit some tennis balls. “If the psychologists are right, it’s important not to be a loner after a certain age,” Crawford says. “Old guys can get pretty weird if left alone.” See COFFEE, Page S7

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

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ROB CRONIN By REBECCA MEANY Express staff writer

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For all his many accomplishments, Rob Cronin takes little credit for himself. Instead, when discussing his life, he repeatedly refers to other people. His parents, his business partners, the beneficiaries of his philanthropy and especially his wife all figure prominently into his view of how he became the man he is. “I have such an advantage,” he said. “I’m two people: my wife and I. She’s unbelievable.” Good people around him and self-motivation within him—these are the driving forces behind the Idaho Mountain Express’ fi rst Man of the Year. Arriving for a meeting, Cronin admits he held a phone meeting on his drive from Hailey to Ketchum. “I’d rather be too busy than not busy at all,” he said. A full schedule is nothing new to him. As a child, his parents instilled in him values that would shape his life. “Work and family were our two biggest focuses,” he said. Paid jobs mowing lawns and washing dishes were interspersed with volunteer stints with his parents and sisters at soup kitchens and other places of need. He said that being around different segments of society taught him to feel comfortable with people who were different from him. That experience later enabled him to interact easily with young cancer patients at Camp Rainbow Gold, where he has volunteered as co-director for the past decade. “I got over the fear of the less fortunate at an early age,” he said. Throughout his youth, most nights ended with the family gathered around the dinner table, a practice he credits with giving him a solid foundation. When he met his future wife, Kris, he saw in her a partner who could match his enthusiasm for productivity. “It was pretty easy when we got together,” he said. Her work ethic matched his work ethic, one he describes as an “overwork ethic.” “We’re very compatible,” he said. “She’s truly my best friend and my soul mate.”

BUSINESS VENTURES Cronin is a well-known figure in the Wood River Valley’s restaurant and real estate scenes. He honed his business skills at restaurants across the country—he was the fi rst employee hired by Planet Hollywood—and opened The Mint and Dyn-o-mite Lounge on Hailey’s Main Street for actor Bruce Willis. In 1999, he came back to the valley to pursue his dream of running his own restaurant. He bought the Red Elephant Saloon in Hailey with Brendan Dennehy and later owned Viva Taqueria. In 2002, he and his partners opened Zou 75, an Asian restaurant/martini bar in Hailey. Cronin’s other position as managing partner at Sun Valley Brokers ensures that his days are fi lled

Hailey resident Rob Cronin, center, voted by readers of the Idaho Mountain Express as the 2011 Man of the Year, stands with two friends from Camp Rainbow Gold, Clair Rayburn, left, and Eli McNees. Cronin is a co-director of the camp, an annual program for kids with cancer held at Cathedral Pines, north of Ketchum. Express photo by David N. Seelig

with activity. Though real estate and restaurant administration take up the bulk of his days, and restaurant operations occupy him at night, he doesn’t feel overextended. Without hesitation, he credits others: Brendan and Ramie Dennehy at Zou 75 and Katherine Rixon and Rob Hogan at Sun Valley Brokers. “I have great partners in both businesses,” he said. “As of this very moment, we’ve got five different real estate deals going on. My partners are working away. Things are getting done.”

A SELF-MOTIVATED MAN In his 20s, Cronin applied himself to his career with his usual zeal. He spent long hours and late nights running restaurants in New York City, Las Vegas and Orlando, with the pursuit of fun also on his mind. Priorities came into clearer focus when he was diagnosed with cancer at age 30. “When I got sick I realized, ‘Did I just waste away everything I was raised to be?’” he said. “It changed everything.” He didn’t wait long to shift focus. “I vowed to give back and pay it forward if I was allowed to live,” he said. Rob and Kris founded the Share Your Heart Ball, the main funding source for the Camp Rainbow Gold program—an annual sum-

mer gathering north of Ketchum. Cronin points to his wife’s skills at donor relations and her attention to detail as key to the camp’s success. “I’m constantly inspired by how hard she works,” he said. “She’s been a phenomenal force.” As one who surrounds himself with people with a strong work ethic and integrity, he seeks the same in himself—a habit that sometimes leads to a feeling of insecurity. “I hold myself to this insane standard,” he said. “I almost feel like I’m never doing enough. That drives me, too. I should probably feel comfortable with the fact that I have a successful real estate business, I have a successful restaurant and a successful camp. But I always feel like I need to be doing more. Maybe I’m not touching enough people.” While not everyone has the support system—or the energy—that Cronin can count on, he says anyone can gain the benefits of altruism. “It’s never too late to start giving,” he said. “The most important thing you can give is of yourself: your time, your energy.” Cronin says there is no better feeling than when someone tells him he has been a positive influence in his or her life. “Once somebody starts giving of themselves and starts putting their energy in a positive direction, it can’t help but come back to (them),” he said. Rebecca Meany: rmeany@mtexpress.com


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CLARK KENT OR SUPERMAN? VALLEY MEN LEAD DUAL LIVES TO PURSUE PASSIONS

By KATHERINE WUTZ Express staff writer

T

he Clark Kents of the Wood River Valley may not be faster than speeding locomotives or be able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, but they manage the superhuman feat of paying the bills while following their dreams. By day, Mark Sheehan is a mild-mannered ice rink maintenance man for Sun Valley Co., driving an Olympia ice smoother in one large spiral day after day. By night, he wields fire, using it to forge metal—mostly steel—into elaborate sculptures. “If a person is simply a guest and they’re here for a weekend, we don’t often strike up a conversation and find out I’m more than a janitor,” Sheehan said. “The locals, however, a number of them have taken the time to learn about what I do.” The dichotomy is nothing new to Sheehan. After going to art school in California, Sheehan and some fellow art students moved to Idaho and attempted to start an art gallery. “That failed immediately,” he said. “That’s when I learned I could wash dishes.” Sheehan washed dishes at the Ketchum Country Kitchen on Main Street in the early 1970s, also dishwashing and working as a prep cook at Mulvaney’s across the street. His day jobs since have been varied and many, including a nineyear stint as a deputy and firearms instructor for the Blaine County Sheriff’s Office. All the while, he was honing his craft. He founded his company, Cherry-Glow Forge and Fabrication, in 1976, eventually amassing a client list that now includes Sun Valley Co. and Herb Allen, founder of the Allen and Co. boutique investment bank.

MIXING MUSIC AND REAL LIFE James Fisher, a carpenter for Lee Gilman Builders, is another valley man living a double life. A self-described “journeyman drummer,” Fisher has balanced drumming with carpentry for almost 15 years, playing in what he estimates to be 20 different bands during that time. “Music has never really paid the bills,” he said. Carpentry—a skill he learned from his father—gave him a flexible, decent schedule and a way to make ends meet. But he said the dichotomy between how people respond to him as a carpenter and a drummer is striking, though it was more so when he was living in Los Angeles. “If you introduce yourself as a drummer—well, I almost never do, because that’s not how I make my money. [But] it’s amazing, the difference.” Fisher said the men he works with at Lee Gilman are surprised when they find out he plays the drums. The response is even more extreme when they see him in action, he said, such as when he plays at the Silver Dollar Saloon in Bellevue, where many of his co-workers go to unwind. “The reactions can be pretty funny,” he said, describing them as “shock and awe.” “They’re just bewildered, how I’m able to do both things,” he said. Sometimes the difference is not so striking. For Jason Spicer, aka “Train,” bartending at Whiskey Jacques’ in Ketchum and playing bass in local band Triple Nixon tend to go hand in hand. However, he said, he sees a difference in how people react to him in his different roles. “When you’re playing music, people don’t treat you like you’re serving them,” he said. “It’s still kind of serving people, but it’s in a different fashion.” While none of them want to give up their night lives, the men agree that there are advantages to being Clark Kent during the day. “There are more bonuses than there are challenges,” Spicer said, adding that he loves being a bartender. “It’s not the same thing every day. Obviously, you’re making drinks, but everyone is different, especially in a town like this. There are some interesting stories.” Spicer said he also uses the opportunity to give his band some publicity, making sure visitors and locals alike know the dates of Triple Nixon’s next gig.

“YOU TRY TO BE REALISTIC. …. EVERY MUSICIAN WOULD LIKE TO HAVE IT AS THEIR JOB, BUT THERE’S A LOT OF PEOPLE OUT THERE.” JASON SPICER Bartender, Whiskey Jacques’ Bass player, Triple Nixon

CONNECTIONS & CHALLENGES For Sheehan, working the ice rink gives him a social outlet he might not otherwise have. “My business tends to leave me in the shop by myself,” he said. But at the rink, he can connect with his co-workers as well as lodge visitors—including Olympic skaters, whom Sheehan describes as fellow artists. “I’m in awe of them,” he said, adding that he fi nds them inspiring. Spicer, too, said he enjoys the inspiration he sometimes gets from the other live bands that play at Whiskey Jacques’ when he’s working. The schedule there suits his practice schedule, too, he said, and his fellow bartenders are willing to switch shifts and pick up some extra cash when he needs help. Still, it’s not always easy. “There have been times when you have to go to rehearsal and you’re just not into it,” he said. “Especially when you’re getting into the season, maybe I’ve worked a bunch of nights in a row, and I finally have a night off. The last thing I want to do is rehearse.” Fisher is no stranger to the pressure of balancing, either. He said his carpentry work is so physical that a full day of work followed by a three-hour rehearsal can be “draining,” leaving him completely exhausted. “It’s difficult,” he said. He said he usually manages to avoid burning out by changing bands or changing the music style he plays. Right now, he said, he’s not in a band because he felt himself on the verge of a burnout. Sheehan manages to balance his craft with his day job now, but that wasn’t always the case. His career choice to move to

James Fisher has been balancing professional carpentry with his passion for drums since before he moved to the valley 15 years ago. He says he can’t be happy if he’s not making music, but that carpentry pays the bills and offers him another creative outlet. Express photos by David N. Seelig

Jason Spicer mixes a cocktail at Whiskey Jacques’ saloon, where he’s worked as a bartender for 10 years. He’s most often seen behind the bar, but Spicer also makes appearances on Whiskey’s stage, playing bass for local band Triple Nixon.

the Sheriff’s Office in 1997 was the result of a burnout, he said, after which he gave up forging for a while. “I suppose you’d call it a midlife crisis,” he said. “But it took me nine years of working for the Sheriff’s Office to find out that I actually had a good thing.” Sheehan was a firearms instructor for the county before becoming a deputy in the jail. It was a steady job, but one Sheehan said he wasn’t suited for. “Treating everyone with respect but still being able to shoot them on the spot” was the hardest part of the job, he said. “That takes a special person, and I’m not it.” Sheehan said the benefits that Sun Valley Co. offers are excellent, but he can’t see giving up forging again after the hiatus he took while working for the county. Going full-time with their passions would be even tougher for Fisher and Spicer, who say they try to be realistic about their odds of breaking into the big-time music scene. “There were periods where I hoped I could, [but the] reality is that it doesn’t really happen,” Fisher said. “It’s a harsh reality, but it’s something that you realize after 20 years as a musician.” “You try to be realistic,” Spicer said. “It’s really tough and it takes a lot of time. Every musician would like to have it as their job, but there’s a lot of people out there.” Faced with the threat of burning out and the slim odds of making it big, disillusionment and discouragement would seem almost de rigueur. So why do these men continue to juggle work and their sidelines? Sheehan said it boils down to one simple concept. “Passion—that’s the key word,” he said. “Maybe it wasn’t the wisest choice in terms of putting aside for retirement. I don’t have a 401(k). I never thought that far ahead. But forging is truly my passion.” Fisher said he doesn’t really have a choice—that he’s compelled to keep on playing, no matter the cost. “It takes endurance and passion. It takes a lot of drive,” he said. “[But] it’s something I have to do or I’m just not happy.”

Fire and ice: Mark Sheehan’s passion is forging or shaping metal through the use of heat and force. But by day, he works for Sun Valley Co. to keep the ice smooth at the resort’s rink.


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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

FIVE FOR FIVE MAN OF THE YEAR NOMINEES TALK ABOUT JOBS, PERSONAL MOTTOES AND WHY THEY LOVE THE VALLEY

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By KATHERINE WUTZ Express staff writer Readers of the Idaho Mountain Express nominated five valley men to be considered for 2011 Man of the Year. In an online vote, they then selected Hailey resident Rob Cronin. Here, the five nominees reveal a few secrets of their lives.

ROB CRONIN

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he grew up: “A doctor, but I worked in restaurants to pay for school. We know how that turned out.” Personal motto: “Do unto others.” Role model: “My wife.” Why he stays here: “Not for the beach! For the people and the lifestyle.”

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ROB CRONIN

(City of Ketchum employee and running coach) Worst summer job: “I assisted an entomologist with mosquito control in Portsmouth, R.I., as a high school junior.” What he wanted to be when he grew up: “I started school in hotel/hospitality management and then shifted and graduated with a degree in culinary arts. I still love to cook and, most of all, eat.” Personal motto: “I don’t really have one, but I tell my daughter to always give 100 percent and most of all have fun. Steve Prefontaine said it best: ‘To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.’” Role model: “Not any one person, but a person that leads by example and will do whatever he or she is asking another to do.” Why he stays here: “For 18 years, the valley has been home. There’s a connection to the people, the mountains and the friends I’ve made over the years. Also, I have a 12-yearold daughter and can’t think of a better place to raise a child.”

(Business development manager, Western States Geothermal) Worst summer job: “Working on a Christmas tree farm. You’re by yourself all day, and you EVAN LAWLER spend a lot of time laying on the ground trimming the bottom of the trees so they have a nice base when you go and buy them for Christmas tree stands.” What he wanted to be when he grew up: “When I went to college, I started out thinking I was going to be an engiKEITH SIVERTSON neer and snow scientist and study avalanches. At some point in middle school, I thought I was going to be a professional mountain biker.” Personal motto: “I don’t know that I have a very succinct one. It’s just to do the best I can. If I’m doing my best JOHN SOFRO and it also helps other (Real estate broker, people, that’s a good BRAD MITCHELL John Alan Partners) way to live.” Worst summer job: Role model: “Age 16, working for a “My parents are really fast-food, home-delivgood role models and ery, fried-chicken estabpeople who have been lishment called “Chickable to be successful in en Delight.” I was very the business world yet good at making the socially responsible to world’s most inedible the community.” coleslaw.” Why he stays here: What he wanted to “I wonder myself somebe when he grew times! I think it’s the up: JOHN SOFRO way of life, our recre“An architect. Designational activities, the ing and creating buildfact that you don’t have to be defined by your job, living in ings has been a passion. It’s why I chose real estate as a second career.” the Wood River Valley.” Personal motto: “Stop complaining and do someKEITH SIVERTSON thing.” (Emergency room physician, St. Role model: Luke’s Wood River) “Tom Nickel. I don’t think there’s Worst summer job: been anyone over the last 10 to 15 “Digging ditches, which was not so years that’s been more committed bad, actually.” to the community with his time, enWhat he wanted to be when ergy and money.” he grew up: Why he stays here: “A doctor.” “In all of my travels, I’ve never found Personal motto: a place like the valley. It has a small“Learn something new every day.” town feeling, a sense of community, Role model: cultural and social amenities found “My dad.” only in much larger cities, and the Why he stays here: finest recreational opportunities “I love the people. They are smart, on the planet. Now if we could all adventurous and community-orient- make a living again.” ed. Emergency services personnel Katherine Wutz: kwutz@mtexpress.com (EMS, fire, law enforcement, ski patrol, dispatchers) in this region are outstanding!”


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DADS JUGGLE JOBS, KIDS AND GENDER ROLES Continued from Page S2 “There’s a little bit of the latchkey thing going on, but they’ve got a lot of great friends with parents who let them hang out at their house until I get home,” he said. “You really need to have that kind of support system to make things work.” He said raising two young daughters has been “a bit more complicated,” especially now that his eldest daughter is a teen.

“IT WASN’T LIKE THE MOVIE ‘MR. MOM,’ WHERE ALL THE LADIES CAME OVER AND PLAYED CARDS.” STEVE DEFFE Ketchum dad “She doesn’t let me go into Victoria’s Secret but makes me stand outside, then she calls me in to help pay for it,” he said. “Female” topics such as buying a first bra and shaving legs were discussed with her mom first, David said, but added that he and his daughter have talked openly about boys, sex, drugs and alcohol. “I usually tell her no boys. Stay away from them until you’re 21—or forever,” he said with a laugh.

David also has had the opportunity to serve as president of the Parent Teacher Association, a position that a male had never taken on before. “It was kind of a gender role reversal, but it was cool,” he said. “A lot of dads in the past haven’t had the experience to really get involved with their kids’ education like that, so I felt lucky.” He believes there are many men like him who are raising children either full or part time, and hopes it leads employers to be as flexible with single fathers as they have been with single moms. He recalled that when he managed the Valley Club, it seemed that it was more natural or expected for female employees to take off work for child-related issues. “I don’t think the men would have ever used that (reason),” he said. “Some of it could be because male employees are guilty of thinking they need to make it work out, because that’s the way it’s always been. But that’s to the detriment of the kids. If a kid is sick or has a day off, you should be able to spend it with them.” He acknowledges that he hasn’t really tested his current employers’ flexibility. “I’m almost hesitant to say, ‘Hey, I gotta take time off to go do this or that,’” he said. Like Deffe and many other single and stay-at-home fathers, David has found the role reversal to be rewarding and worth the challenge, and said it has created a closer relationship with his children. “I also think that I’ve been able to be a role model and show my kids that it’s OK for dads to be in this role. That is so important to me.”

COFFEE—THE TIE THAT BINDS VALLEY MEN’S GROUPS Continued from Page S3

HAILEY COFFEE CO. The morning Joes at the Hailey Coffee Co. are perhaps less closeknit than those in either Ketchum or Carey. Neither farmers nor former ski pros, the crowd in Hailey tends to be made up of smaller groups with shared interests rather than large groups of old friends who have been meeting for decades. The café’s sound system plays Bob Dylan as early morning turns to day. Several men are plugged into laptops with headphones, doing business in virtual worlds all their own. Others, however, are more social. A group of thespians, Jon Kane, Scott Creighton and Andrew Alberger, gather occasionally at the café to talk theater, tell jokes and commiserate before going to work. Kane is producing four comedy acts for the nexStage Theatre in Ketchum, while Creighton and Alberger

also work non-theater-related jobs. Creighton is a day radio host and Alberger works nights as a waiter. But all three make sure to take time for morning coffee. “We just sit around and dish about all the other people we know,” jokes Kane. Q

By 8 a.m., the early groups wash out and the counter is a mosh pit of regulars, a bustle of men and women from all walks of life grabbing some caffeine before they start the day. A few stragglers linger, perhaps trying to savor the last remnants of newsprint and conversation. Soon they, too, will wander outside. Some may search for another café where conversation hasn’t ended, but most return to their everyday lives, all the while looking forward to tomorrow morning. Tony Evans: tevans@mtexpress.com

HAPPY FATHERS DAY! OPEN for DINNER 7 NIGHTS A WEEK LUNCH MONDAY-FRIDAY Great Local and Organic Food Outdoor Dinning See our menu at Cksrealfood.com 208-788-1223

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

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Valley man 2011  

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